YORKTOWN HEIGHTS, NY – Actions taken at Tuesday’s Town Board continued to make technological upgrades and environmental enhancements at the forefront on the 2020 agenda. A unanimous vote paved the way for the Town’s website to receive its first update since 2013 and a second vote moved needed pesticide treatments for Mohegan Lake closer to reality.
Yorktown Supervisor Matt Slater cheered the resolutions saying, “It is well past time to update our website which is the first introduction for potential residents and businesses to our Town. This will make information more accessible and easier for homeowners and businesses to do business with our Town. Upgrading the town’s technology for residents and businesses has been an important priority for my administration. This is the first step in that process with more to come.”
The Town plans to spend $5,000 to update the website. This is the same amount it spent on the last face lift in 2013.
The Town Board also approved a resolution to move forward with the proposal process for Mohegan Lake Pesticide Treatments. This is a direct result of a grant awarded to Yorktown from the New York State Department of Environmental Conservation for stormwater infrastructure in December of 2019. The Mohegan Lake Improvement District partnered with the Town of Yorktown to put the application forward.
Yorktown Councilman Tom Diana said, “These are important initiatives that we are moving forward that will have a positive impact on our community. Technological and environmental improvements continue to be a main focus for us.”
Yorktown Councilman Ed Lachterman stated, “Everyone knows to compete in a digital world requires a modern website. Everyone in our Town should be very excited about the work the Town Board continues to move forward in such a short period of time.”
Students from Lakeland and Yorktown High Schools also presented on impact water, sewer and land use has on Yorktown’s local environment. In addition, a student from Fox Lane High School unveiled artwork that is being displayed in the Community Room of the Jefferson Valley Mall which raised money for Yorktown Alliance for Safe Kids.
YORKTOWN HEIGHTS, NY – Following his election in November, Yorktown Supervisor Matt Slater organized a bipartisan community transition team to help him prepare for his new role. The transition team included a wide range of professionals from every corner of Yorktown. At Tuesday’s Town Board Meeting the transition team presented their report which focused on five pillars of interest: communication, technology, economic development, enviornment and infrastrucutre.
“The work done by the community transition team has proven to be pivotal in my first days in office,” Yorktown Supervisor Matt Slater said. “This report reflects the conversations we had which were focused on making Yorktown the absolute best it can be. I will be forever grateful to those who participated and we enjoyed the experience so much that we are planning on continuing to meet throughout the year.”
The transition team was co-chaired by Tricy Cushner, President of the Yorktown Alliance for Safe Kids and Peter Lanza who serves as Vice President of the Yorktown Chamber of Commerce. Vision 2020 identifies challenges and opportunities facing the Town of Yorktown. A SWOT Analysis was performed in addition to extensive discussions among team members.
Click here to read the full report.
Tricy Cushner said, “Supervisor Slater’s Transition Team is unprecedented for our community. This report provides an outline for suggested goals, objectives and action steps incorporating opportunities and concerns that the Transition Team identified to assist Town government in its mission to build a better community with long term fiscal, social, and environmental sustainability.”
Peter Lanza added, “This was my first involvement in local government and it was incredibly positive. Supervisor Slater brought together an incredible team of professionals and set the stage early for a solutions based conversation that benefits all of the residents of Yorktown. This report reflects those conversations and ideas that emerged from our meetings.”
One suggestion which Slater has implemented is establishing a new town email address to engage residents of new ideas. Residents can now email firstname.lastname@example.org with suggestions for the Town or things they would like to see in Town.
YORKTOWN HEIGHTS, NY – On Saturday, Yorktown Supervisor Matt Slater, Yorktown Police Chief Robert Noble and Monsignor Joseph Giandurco of St. Patrick’s Parish welcomed Timothy Cardinal Dolan to Yorktown. They toured St. Patrick’s Old Stone Church which was one of the sites of recent vandalism. In total, Yorktown Police continue to investigate six sites of vandalism including three houess of worship.
“We are not letting what happened here define this community,” Supervisor Slater said. “We are so appreciative of the leadership and partnership of Cardinal Dolan and Monsignor Giandurco. Working with our religious and community leaders, as well as the Yorktown Police Department, we will continue to reject all forms of hate.”
In a video message to the Yorktown community Cardinal Dolan said, “This is so contrary to everything Yorktown stands for. You have a sense of solidarity, helpfulness, outreach that brings people together. You are known for your unity not your divisiveness, you are known for peacefulness not violence.”
Cardinal Dolan led mass at St. Patrick’s Church Saturday evening and Elizabeth Ann Seton on Sunday.
YORKTOWN HEIGHTS, NY – At Yorktown’s first town board meeting of 2020 resolutions were passed creating a Veterans’ Advisory Committee and a Climate Smart Communities Task Force. Both measures were passed unanimously.
Yorktown Supervisor Matt Slater applauded the approvals saying, “Our community took great strides forward in our first meeting. We as a community are committed to improving services and communication to our local veterans and the creation of a Veterans’ Advisory Committee is a great first step. Additionally, establishing a Climate Smart Communities Task Force is significant progress in making Yorktown a leader in combating local climate change.”
Yorktown originally passed a resolution in 2009 pledging to become a Climate Smart Community but no additional actions have been taken until Tuesday’s town board meeting. Becoming a Climate Smart Community means participating in a state recognized and supported program that helps local governments take action to reduce greenhouse gas emissions and adapt to a changing climate. Currently there are 35 participating communities in Westchester County but only three have been certified.
Yorktown Councilman Tom Diana said, “From our veterans to local environment our first meeting set a strong tone that I believe will continue for the rest of the year. We have a lot of work to do for our community and Tuesday’s meeting gave residents a glimpse of the direction Yorktown will now be heading in.”
Yorktown Councilman Ed Lachterman, who will serve as the liaison to the Veterans’ Advisory Committee added, “Our veterans deserve so much for defending our freedoms and way of life. This committee will help streamline services to our veterans and gives them the official recognition which they have earned.”
Yorktown Councilwoman Alice Roker said, “2020 marks the beginning of a new decade and a new Town Board for the Town of Yorktown. A new spotlight will be focused on improving the lives of veterans and finding new ways to combat the climate crisis with the creation of two new volunteer boards.”
Anyone interested in joining either the Veterans’ Advisory Committee or Climate Smart Communities Task Force is encouraged to contact the Supervisor’s office at 914-962-5722 ext. 201 or email email@example.com. Yorktown’s next regular Town Board session is scheduled for Tuesday, January 21st.
YORKTOWN HEIGHTS, NY – Authorities in Yorktown released a photo of a suspected vehicle in a string of vandalism that has now reached six separate sites across the suburb community. The Yorktown Police Department continue to investigate damage caused as the John C. Hart Memorial Library, First Presbyterian Church, Yorktown Stage, Veterans’ Memorial Park and the St. Patrick’s Old Stone Church.
Yorktown Supervisor Matt Slater stated, “We will not tolerate these acts nor will we let these actions define our community. I have full confidence in the Yorktown Police Department, as well as our partners on the county, state and federal levels. We are doing everything possible to bring a swift conclusion to this awful incident. Yorktown will continue to stand firm against any and all forms of hate.”
Yorktown Police Chief Robert Noble said, “We are casting a very wide net. We have called in any resource we can think of to assist us in our investigation including the Westchester County Police, the Office of the Westchester County District Attorney, the New York State Police and the FBI.”
Chief Noble released a photo of a suspected vehicle leaving the John C. Hart Memorial Library. The Yorktown Police Department is currently working with law enforcement agencies to enhance the photo.
Westchester County District Attorney Anthony Scarpino offered his continued support saying, “My office will continue to work closely with Yorktown police in investigating these serious and unsettling acts. Our prosecutors and our crime analysts at the Westchester Intelligence Center will do everything we can to see that this investigation moves swiftly. And we will prosecute whomever committed these heinous crimes to the fullest extent of the law.”
The Yorktown Police Department has maintained an increase presence over the weekend throughout the community and will continue with an increased presence at local houses of worship. Yorktown’s Builidng and Maintenance Department, in partnership with Yorktown Glass, have already replaced the glass doors at the Yorktown Stage. The seventeen panes of glass at the John C. Hart Library are expected to be replaced this week while the library continues to operate.
Yorktown Councilman Tom Diana said, “This is something we will not tolerate. We do not tolerate racism, we do not tolerate anti-Semitism in this community.”
Yorktown Councilman Ed Lachterman stated, “This does not happen in Yorktown. The results of this will hopefully make sure something like this does not happen again.”
Msgr. Giandurco of St. Patrick’s Church said, “Our parishoners were both sad and upset of the breaking of our 90 year old windows. Obviously it could have been a lot worse but we thank God it was only the windows. We hope that these types of actions cease from happening both here, across the country and around the world.”
Rabbi Robbie Weiner of Temple Beth Am said, “I want to thank the Chief and Supervisor for taking this so seriously. For us, when an attack happens at one of our houses of worship it is an attack on all of our houses of worships. The interfaith community is very much bonded together and will continue to be united in support of each other.”
Pastor Chip Low of the First Presbyterian Church gave thanks to the town leadership and police department. “We are thankful that this is not a normal occurrence in Yorktown. We must not respond to this attack in the same way it was done to us.”
Pastor Tami Siedel added, “We are so grateful to our police department and town government for their quick reaction. We continue to pray that all of our faith communities stand together and be a beacon of light and hope.”
YORKTOWN HEIGHTS, NY – Authorities in Yorktown were alerted to a string of vandalism which occurred in early morning hours of January 4th on both town and private property.
Yorktown Supervisor Matt Slater and Police Chief Robert Noble released the following joint statement:
“Earlier this morning, a number of acts of vandalism were discovered on Town Property. Four glass doors were shattered at the Yorktown Stage, a menorah was toppled at Veterans’ Field and multiple windows were broken at the John C. Hart Memorial Library. In addition, windows at the First Presbyterian Church and the St. Patrick’s Old Stone Church were also destroyed. As soon as these criminal acts were discovered town government took immediate action.
The Yorktown Police opened an investigation and are currently collecting evidence and reviewing video of the immediate and surrounding areas. At this point, the incidents appear linked. Town personnel are repairing the damaged town facilities.
The Town of Yorktown wholeheartedly condemns these hateful and disrespectful acts. We will attempt to identify and hold accountable those responsible to the fullest extent of the law.
Destructive acts such as these have no place in Yorktown. They have no place in any community. We ask that our community assist our police department by sharing any information that may be helpful in the apprehension of those responsible for these crimes. If you have any relevant information, please contact the Yorktown Police Department by phone at 914-962-4141 or by email firstname.lastname@example.org.
The town is monitoring its other public facilities and the Yorktown Police will maintain an increased presence.”
LAKE MOHEGAN, NY – Thanks to legislation passed by two state officials in 2018 Yorktown is now on the receiving end of $30,000 to begin improving the condition of Lake Mohegan. New York State’s Regional Economic Development Council awarded the Town of Yorktown the grant through the New York’s Inland Waterway Program to complete a green infrastructure feasibility study to analyze options for reducing phosphorous going into Lake Mohegan.
In March incoming Supervisor Matt Slater questioned why Yorktown had not taken advantage of the special designation. Serving as Chief-of-Staff to then State Senator Terrence Murphy, Slater assisted in writing and passing the original legislation.
“I want to thank everyone involved for finally taking advantage of the inland waterway designation,” Slater said. “Resoring the health of Lake Mohegan must be a priority of our community and partners within state government. I look forward to working with our community partners to implement this study and take the necessary steps to rehabilitate Lake Mohegan for everyone to enjoy.”
Westchester County Department of Health closed the public beaches of Lake Mohegan in July due to harmful algal blooms. Slater immediately requested New York State’s Rapid Response Team be sent to assist the municipality and local community. The closures came despite a DEC pilot program that included the application of alum sulfate.
New York State Senator Terrence Murphy cheered today’s news stating, “We passed this leigslation for the exact reason we are seeing today. Lake Mohegan has consistently been cited as one of New York State’s most at risk waterbodies. New York State has a responsibility to support its rehabilitation.”
New York State Assemblyman Kevin Byrne added,” XXX”
Yorktown Councilman Tom Diana said, “This is a beautiful lake that I used to swim in growing up, but since 2012, this lake has basically not been open for swimming. With the inland waterway designation, we are now able to get the help we need to keep this lake a viable resource to the community.”
Yorktown Councilman Ed Lachterman agreed saying, “We knew there was a lot of grant money available and it is great to see the outgoing administration finally capitalize on something we pointed out. The future is bright for Yorktown and this is a great way to kickoff the new year.”
JEFFERSON VALLEY, NY – On Thursday, Yorktown Supervisor Elect Matt Slater hosted the second meeting of his bipartisan community transition team at the Jefferson Valley Mall. Topics of discussion included land use policy, economic development opportunities, technological improvements and environmental enhancements.
The team represents the collaborative approach Slater intends to bring to Town Hall to advance his agenda in 2020. A report of recommendations from the transition team is expected by the end of the year.
“We continue to identify real opportunities for Yorktown that will improve local services, attract new employment possibilities and help our community reach its full potential,” Slater said. “From small business owners and corporate executives to not-for-profit leaders and college professors, our community transition team is proving to be an incredible resource to ensure we hit the ground running in 2020.”
YORKTOWN HEIGHTS, NY – Yorktown Supervisor Elect Matt Slater took advantage of Operation Toy Drop to teach his four year old son Charlie the importance of helping those in need. Operation Toy Drop, which is organized and hosted by the J.I.M.M.Y. Foundation, collects and delivers toys to kids at the Maria Fareri Children’s Hospital. The Yorktown Heights Firehouse on Commerce Street was one of the collection points.
“The Holiday Season is just as much about giving as receiving,” Slater said. “Operation Toy Drop is a great program that helps bring some holiday joy to children who are very sick. I thank the Yorktown Heights Fire District and the J.I.M.M.Y. Foundation for giving our community the opportunity of helping some very special kids.”
This marks the sixth year the J.I.M.M.Y. Foundation has led the effort to collect toys which are then brought by helicopter by Santa Clause to kids at the Maria Fareri Children’s Hospital in Valhalla. This year Santa is scheduled to arrive on December 13th. The last day to drop off toys at the Yorktown Fire Department is Monday, December 9th from 6:30PM to 9:00PM.
The Just Imagine Making Miracles Yours organization was started in 2006 in memory of James “Jimmyboy” Arena by his parents, Jim and Gina Arena of Somers. Jimmyboy was diagnosed with a brain tumor at the age of four and succumbed to brain cancer at the age of six. The organization helps families by taking monetary donations and assists by paying various bills for families struggling with a child facing a life threatening illness and/or injuries within Westchester and Putnam Counties.
“This event brings joy to children who are being treated in the hospital during the holidays,” said Gina Arena. “Part of why we continue this every year is because we know how it feels to be in this situation, and in Jimmy’s memory my husband, my children and I can do something magical that can lighten the moment and bring love and joy to these children and their families. This journey is a tough enough “club” to be in and with the help of the community that took care of our family, we can bring the true meaning of this time of year to the less fortunate children. We live in an awesome community, and I know Jimmy is with us all the way. Share the magic, be the love and believe.”
Collection points included the Cross County Locksmith in Somers, Heritage Fuel & Propane in Croton Falls, the Katonah Fire Department, Bedford Village Fire Department, Bedford Hills Fire Department and the Yorktown Heights Volunteer Fire Department.
“It is great to see the community get behind such a great cause,” Yorktown Fire Commissioner Martin McGannon said. “The toys go a long way for the kids.”
YORKTOWN HEIGHTS, NY – For the thrid year in a row the Yorktown community embraced the Hudson Valley Turkey Trot hosted by former State Senator Terrence Murphy and the Taconic Road Runners Club. More than 400 runners sprinted down Front Street with all of the proceeds being divided among the food pantries of St. Mary’s in Mohegan Lake, St. John’s in Mahopac and CHHOP of Peekskill.
“Once again our community turned out in support of a fantastic cause,” Yorktown Supervisor Elect Matt Slater said. “Our local food pantries provide an invaluable service to families and this is an easy and fun way to support them during the holiday season.”
The inaugural trot took place three years ago thanks to then State Senator Terrence Murphy. Murphy, who resides in Yorktown and represented the area, has pledged to continue the race because of the positive impact it has on families who rely on local food pantries.
“This is just such a great event that supports an even greater cause,” Murphy explained. “Our Turkey Trot raises critical funds for our local food pantries who do so much for our neighbors in need. This year’s 400 runners set a new mark for us to beat next year.”
This year’s event sponsors included JV Bagels, Gatorade, the Taconic Road Runners and the Yorktown Police Department. The first runner crossed the finish line at a blistering 15:38. Next year’s Turkey Trot is already scheduled for Thanksgiving Morning, Thursday, November 26th.